Farm bills: Kerala govt examines possibility of legal challenge in SC

Farmer | Farm Land | Field

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government is contemplating the possibility of challenging the farm bills passed by the Parliament in the Supreme court, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said during his customary sunset briefing on Wednesday.

The Kerala Cabinet has decided to ask the Law department to look into the legal aspects of the same.

It came up as a suggestion in the cabinet meeting, he told reporters, replying to a question whether his government will move the apex court against the farm bills, being opposed by several political parties and farmers across the country. "It came up as a suggestion in the cabinet meeting. We understand that we need to examine the legal side of that matter. We have decided to let the law department look into it," he said.

The Chief Minster had on Monday alleged that through the two bills, an attempt was being made by the Central government to "push the life of farmers into eternal misery". In the last six years, over 60,000 farmers had committed suicide and in 2019 alone, 10,281 had ended their lives in the country, Vijayan had said in a Facebook post.

He had also slammed the suspension of eight opposition MPs from the Rajya Sabha, for protesting against the farmers bill, and said it was an attack on democracy. The MPs were suspended on Monday, a day after the Upper House witnessed unprecedented unruly scenes by protesting opposition members during the passage of the two farm bills, described by the government as the biggest reforms in the agriculture sector.

The Farmer's Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill 2020, have already been passed by the Lok Sabha and will now go to the President for his assent before they are notified as laws.

The Opposition led by the Congress in Rajya Sabha had criticised the farm bills saying they will not sign on the "death warrant" of farmers and demanded that they be sent to the Select Committee for scrutiny, while the ruling BJP had accused these parties of misleading the farmers.

(With PTI inputs.)

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